Z3TA+ by Cakewalk iPad App

Z3TA+ iPad App

Information and Specifications

Category: Synthesizer Apps
Released: Feb 20, 2014
Version: 1.0
Size: 22.4 MB
Language: English
Seller: Cakewalk
© Cakewalk, Inc.
Requirements: Requires iOS 7.0 or later. Compatible with iPad.
Price: $19.99
Get it here:

Description: The legendary Z3TA+ synthesizer has been used on countless records, and it’s distinctive sound has been a staple of electronic artists the world over. And now Z3TA+ iOS puts the full power of Z3TA+2 on your iPad. Packed with hundreds of presets, modulatable waveshaping, dual mode filters, and flexible effects, Z3TA+ iOS is the perfect creative synth for making music anywhere, anytime.


Review
Cakewalk delivers their own iOS port of a popular synthesizer, the Z3TA+ 2 (itself an update of the original legendary brand). Just like similar synthesizers for the iPad of recent, Z3TA+ is as shallow or in-depth as you want it to be, depending if you love playing the presets or want to get into deep programming. It has it all. And more. For starters there are over 500 presets. Waveshaping synthesis with 6 Oscillators and 6 LFOs. Modulation Matrix including 16 Sources, Curves, Controls, and Destinations. Advanced modular effects including Distortion, Mod, Compression, etc. Performance section with Tap Tempo, assignable XY Pad, Mod Wheels, and Adaptive Pitch Bend. Inter-App Audio, Background Audio, and Audiobus support. That’s just a few of the features. But is it worth buying another synthesizer for your iPad when we have hundreds already released with similar features? Is it worth the $19.99?

If you’re not familiar with the PC or MAC version don’t worry. The layout is simple and there isn’t a trace of a confusing design, which is nice. The SYNTH page is made up of four sections, plus the keyboard, mod wheels, and matrix section sitting on the bottom. The OSC section is where the 6 oscillators lie with an assortment of parameters and modes to adjust. Click the small arrow keys to the right of the WAVE sections opens up various OSC waveforms that include Saw, Square, Triangle, Bazx it, etc. These also have a further screen to select the kind of waveform within the wave such as for the Saw you can select a Vintage Saw, a Multisaw or 2-bit saw. You can then transpose or change the octave. The Mode sections gives you normal, sync, inverted and multi sync. Underneath that is GROUP to change to sync, FM, ADD and Ring. Each oscillator can be turned on or off, fine tuned, spread across the stereo field and level adjusted. The warp area shows a graphical representation of the wave you have selected. There are 3 pages of fine adjusting the wave shape. Next to that you can use the slider to move between the 2 filters.

The EQ section is layered out like the OSC above it, so if you want to change the EQ of a certain oscillator you have direct access to the 6, plus an extra button for pitch and AMP. All the ADSR functions are available to fine adjust using the knobs at the bottom. Simple. Like the slider for the OSC the EQ has a similar slider for AMOUNT.

The filter section has 2 filters and 2 modes: Parallel and Dual. The filters can be linked together or unlinked to operate separately. There are 8 different kinds of filter to select and both can be panned and leveled separately or on its own. Finally there is a Limiter and Reso Boost for each filter. Like I mentioned before to the left of the filter you can move the slider between each filter as you see fit. The final section is the LFO. I won’t get into detail with it except to add that it includes 2 sliders for Time and Speed as well as buttons to adjust the offset, delay and fade in.

The second screen is the MOD/ARP section. I won’t get into the Modulation side of it. The ARP section has a massive amount of potential to get your sound moving along nicely. It is made up of several sections: Groove, Patterns, Sync, Octaves, Mode and Sort. As well as Velocity, Length and Speed sliders. The Arpeggiator pattern section opens up a menu to select the kind of notes you want played, including old favorites such as Up, Down and Random, plus 250 midi patterns. Possibly the best arpeggiator implementation I’ve seen in an app.

The Effects sections includes more EQ-ing, Compressors, Reverbs, Distortion, etc. Each section can be turned on or off and you can route an effect any way you like just by moving it up or down in the order you want it.

The dice. I’m a big fan of rolling the dice and seeing what preset comes up. Great feature.

Other interesting features can be found in the Options section. You can tap tempo , bypass the effects and enable the Arpeggiator. If your Arps are not working make sure this is on.

I’ve missed out on a lot of things. I didn’t want to write a book! Having said that this app can be as simple or complex as you like. For the sound designer the sky’s the limit really. The Arpeggiator section is the high point of the whole app. Perfect. The preset sounds are full of building blocks to create your own sounds and mess with the high quality choices on offer. The effects are great, the filter full of features and ways of using it I’d never thought of before. And the actual design of the whole app is beautiful. The only thing really missing is MIDI learn, unless it’s buried inside somewhere that I’ve missed. I’d love to assign knobs on an external keyboard for filter cut-offs, etc. The PC and MAC versions have it. The price is good value. It’s priced about right. Definitely a great app and up there with the best of them. Get it here: Z3TA+ – CakewalkZ3TA+ – Cakewalk